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Improved seeds, the answer to Africa’s food security needs

June 27th, 2017 / News Ghana

For Africa to become self-sufficient in food production, what it needs are improved seeds, rather than huge machinery, Owusu Afriyie Akoto, Minister for Food and Agriculture in Ghana declared here on Wednesday.
In his address at the 10th Anniversary of the West African Center for Crop Improvement (WACCI) the minister said …

Why technologies could hook the youth to agriculture

June 23rd, 2017 / SciDev.net

Strengthening resilience and food security for agricultural communities is necessary for transforming agriculture, wellness and development of people, especially the youth, in Africa.
Salient to me from the Ministerial Conference on Global Open Data for Agriculture and Nutrition and the 4th Agritec Africa International Exhibition in Kenya last week (14-16 June) …

African countries launch the Global Report on Commercialized Biotech/GM

June 22nd, 2017 / ISAAA, US

For Africa, 2016 was the 19th year of commercialization of biotech crops. A total of 13 countries, up from 11 in 2015 either planted, conducted trials or transitioned to granting approvals for general release of various biotech crops. South Africa and Sudan grew a total of 2.8 million hectares of …

Student to boost Vitamin A content of chickpea

June 22nd, 2017 / ISAAA, US

Chickpeas may soon be added to the list of vitamin A-enriched crops. Vitamin A has been proven to enhance brain function, improve sight and skin health, and slow down aging.
According to Bunyamin Tar’an, professor at the University of Saskatchewan and chickpea breeder, chickpeas are a well-known source of protein and …

Biotechnology could spur Africa’s industrialisation

June 22nd, 2017 / Southern Times

An industrial development strategy could be built on the back of Africa’s agricultural sector underpinned by the adoption of new and emerging technologies such as biotechnology to support improved yields, value addition and services that feed into the whole agro-processing value chain, a top Common Market for Eastern and Southern …

Using genetics to reduce greenhouse gases from cows

June 15th, 2017 / Wired, US

Bovine livestock are responsible for about 9.5 percent of global greenhouse gas output, according to the Food and Agriculture Organization of the United Nations. Farmers are trying to reduce those emissions with lots of different strategies, starting with their diets. Researchers have tried adding flaxseed oil, garlic, juniper berries, and …

Scientists discover plant ‘brain’ controlling seed development

June 9th, 2017 / Phys.org

A new study by scientists at the University of Birmingham has revealed a group of cells that function as a ‘brain’ for plant embryos, capable of assessing environmental conditions and dictating when seeds will germinate.
A plant’s decision about when to germinate is one of the most important it will make …

Public learns about biotech for climate smart agriculture at World Environment Day commemoration in Uganda

June 8th, 2017 / ISAAA

“I believe in green energy, green agriculture, and a green economy. We can waste no more time, let us fight together for our planet, ” said French ambassador to Uganda, Ms. Stephanie Rivoal, while speaking on behalf of the European Union at the World Environment Day celebrations in Ibanda district …

Solving Africa’s food insecurity through biotechnology

June 7th, 2017 / The Tribune, Nigeria

There is an increasing focus on science being linked to providing practical solutions to agricultural problems. There is also increasing awareness of technology, although the channels used for information and creating change in the way information is passed and understood by the receiver are poorly developed.
Biotechnology is no …

AfDB adopts investment strategies to develop Africa’s agriculture

June 1st, 2017 / African Farming

Khaled Sherif, vice-president of African Development Bank (AfDB), announced new investment strategies like providing high-yielding seeds and making large farms more productive to boost up Africa’s agriculture sector.
According to Sherif, the proposed strategies would effectively alter the market structures around the world in favour of the African farmers of …